In an ideal world we would wake up every day, ready and motivated to obliterate our workout, hit our step count, and stick to our calorie goal. But, reality is, we don't always want to.
Motivation plays a massive role in our day to day lives, especially when it comes to exercise. We all know that daily movement is good for our heads and heart, but this isn't always enough to get us moving.
To help silence that little voice in our heads telling us "I'll start Monday" or "I'll do it tomorrow", here are our top 5 tips to increase your exercise motivation and to start making it part of your daily routine.
1. Set SMART Goals
When we say to create smart goals we don't mean trying to concoct the most intelligent. But rather, setting out objectives that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time orientated.
SMART goals are built from 5 components, used to create measurable targets that are channeled towards a desired outcome. They are goals that create a clear timeline of what needs to be done and when, eliminating the guesswork out of what ingredients are needed for success.
How to create a SMART Goal:
S - Specific
Having a clear and concise goal to work towards will be much more inspiring than one that is vague or ambiguous.
Say you're into running and you're wanting to increase your speed. Do you think you'll be more inclined to chuck on your runners and hit the track if you're goal is to 'be a faster runner' or if it's to 'decrease your 2km running time by 1 minute'?
When it comes to your fitness it's important to hone in on exactly what it is you're trying to achieve and to structure your goals from there.
M - Measurable
When you're able to track your progress and acknowledge the advancements you've made in your training, you'll find it is much more motivating to keep moving forward. This is why it's so important to create a goal that is measurable.
Take the scenario from above for example. Tracking whether you're 2km running time has decreased is extremely easy, just strap on your watch and see if you were able run faster than the time before.
The quicker you get, and the more time that drops off that 2km trial, the more motivated you'll be to keep running.
A - Achievable
This seems pretty obvious, but don't underestimate its importance. When it comes to your health and fitness you're going to be most motivated when you're striving for something that is challenging, yet achievable.
If your goal is too easy than what are you really working towards? If it is too hard, then you're probably going to lose interest in it pretty quickly.
R - Realistic
Just like your goals need to be achievable, they also need to be realistic.
Increasing your deadlift one rep max by 15kg, doable. Increasing your deadlift one rep max by 15kg in 5 days, not doable.
If you set unrealistic goals then you're going to feel pretty disheartened and unmotivated once you realise they just aren't possible. Set yourself up for success by making sure you have the time and tools necessary to achieve your objective.
T - Time Orientated
You don't have forever, so pretend like you do. The best goals are the ones with a deadline. This is because having an end date gives you something to focus on and strive towards, boosting your motivation.
If you give yourself 6 weeks to knock 2 minutes of your 2km running time, then you're likely to run most days. If you give yourself 2 years, you're probably going to lose focus pretty quickly.
Setting a realistic timeline is a great way to feel inspired and to stay on track with your fitness.
2. Write It Down
Putting pen to paper can be extremely powerful. By writing down your intentions they become more real, helping us stay focused on our goals.
Writing a daily to-do-list and including your physical activity can be a great way to enhance your accountability and actually commit to exercise.
Another effective tool is to write up a training program. This not only helps with accountability, but it always allows you to track your progress.
3. Bring Back The Fun
If you're already lacking motivation then you MUST choose exercise that is fun. If you're bored of lifting weights, try a team sport. If running track seems like more of a chore than an hobby, test out a HIIT class.
You're more likely to show up day after day if what you're doing is enjoyable.
Hot Tip: switch up training to keeps things fresh and exciting. This will not only help with your motivation but will also help maximise your results (but still keep it fun).
4. Find A Friend
No one ever said you had to complete your fitness journey alone. Finding a likeminded friend or family member to exercise with can be an awesome source of motivation and accountability.
When it comes to finding a workout buddy, you should also think outside of the box. If you can't find someone to come to your favourite gym class, invite them on a walk. Go play basketball or footy with the kids. Organise a virtual Zoomba class at home. There are a TON of ways to increase your physical activity whilst sneaking in that all important social time.
5. Treat Yourself
Giving yourself a little treat or reward at the end of your workout can be a great motivator to get you moving. And no, we don't mean smashing a large pepperoni pizza once your workout is over. But maybe allow yourself the time to watch a few episodes of your favourite show, buy a new pair of runners, or get some new equipment for your home gym.
We hope this blog has helped you feel a little more inspired. And as always, chuck us a comment or shoot us an email if you have any more questions!